by Rashmi Thapaliya
President Ross announced a gift of $200,000 from The Cleo L. Craig Foundation during a special ceremony in early March. President Ross was joined by C.L. Craig, Jr., second-generation Cameron alumnus and chairman of The Cleo L. Craig Foundation, and his wife, Helen, a foundation trustee and former Cameron student. The funds will be applied to construction of the McMahon Centennial Complex (MCC), the state-of-the-art student activities complex that opened last week.
“We are deeply grateful to the board of The Cleo L. Craig Foundation for its support,” President Ross said. “This generous gift will play a key role in Cameron’s ability to provide a complete collegiate experience for our students. It is particularly gratifying to learn of the significant role that Cameron played in the Craigs’ lives and the recognition of that role that this momentous gift signifies.”
Craig explained the impact that Cameron has had on his family.
“Education has always been a priority for The Cleo L. Craig Foundation, and we are pleased to support Cameron University with this gift,” Craig said. “My parents attended Cameron when the institution was in its infancy. They would have never imagined that the high school and college they knew would grow to become a university of such stature. The transformation of this campus is something to behold. Today’s Cameron students are benefiting from everything Cameron has to offer.”
Vice President for University Advancement Albert Johnson, Jr. said that the university applied for the funds in October, and it is great that the Craig foundation helped the construction process so much. He added that the relationship of Cameron University with the Craig foundation helped it to find the grant.
“I do not want people to have the wrong idea that we applied for the grant at the last minute when we were out of funds,” Johnson said. “With a project of the status of the McMahon Center, the additional funds allow us to do all that we want to do enhancing the complex itself.”
After receiving approval from the board of regents CU officially named the balcony of the MCC, which overlooks the Bentley Gardens, after The Cleo L. Craig Foundation.
The MCC is a multi-use, multi-purpose facility located at the heart of the Cameron University campus. It houses a variety of student activities, food services and community spaces. These include a student dining area, student activity areas, game room, meeting rooms, bookstore, a 400-seat ballroom and a balcony overlooking the Bentley Gardens.
The complex is currently under-going final preparations before the grand opening ceremony that will be held at noon on Thursday.